Pipe might not be the first word that pops into your head when you see a hookah, but the origins of the Hookah are very much in line with the evolution of pipes and other smoking utensils. While this is definitely evident in the interior design of the hookah, the pipe has remained very similar to its original shape.
Before hookahs were made of glass and metal, they were generally made with anything that could act as a water reservoir – things like coconuts and gourds. Since there was no flexible material to create a hose out of, the stems were generally solid as well, giving the hookah the appearance of a complex, long-stemmed pipe.
The first shisha smoked out of these primitive hookahs was also more like pipe tobacco, instead of having molasses or honey added in it was smoked dry in a style called Tumbak. With the introduction of hookahs that were closer to the modern products we see today, dry tobacco became less and less popular, quickly replaced amongst hookah smokers by the sticky, flavored style of shisha.